Some of the best news for the Atlanta housing market entering 2017 is its abundance of vacant developed lots.
The Atlanta region has 80,491 vacant developed lots, more than any other metropolitan area nationally, according to Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Supervision and Regulation Division Senior Financial Policy Analyst Domonic Purviance, who spoke at the Atlanta Real Estate Summit.
Atlanta’s lot count exceeds that of cities including Chicago, which has about 38,000; and Houston, which has 46,000, Purviance said. The Baltimore metropolitan statistical area, as an example, has 5,283 vacant developed lots for home building.
Nationally, the housing market has not seen a lot of growth in vacant developed lots, which is one reason why home prices are rising, Purviance said at the Feb. 2 summit, sponsored by the Atlanta Realtors Association and Atlanta Business Chronicle and held at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
Relatively low inventory compared to demand is putting upward pressure on home prices in metro Atlanta and the nation, a trend that is expected to continue in 2017, Purviance said.
A good portion of metro Atlanta’s lots are in Paulding County. The Paulding County ZIP code 30132 has 3,444 lots. Purviance noted that Paulding is one of two Atlanta counties with no interstate highway access; the other is Fayette.
The core counties — Fulton, Gwinnett, Forsyth, Cobb — are still where most people are moving to within Georgia, he said.